Trump-Russia Timeline
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Date:Event:Source 1Source 2Source 3
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Jun 18, 2013Donald Trump tweets: "Do you think Putin will be going to The Miss Universe Pageant in November in Moscow - if so, will he become my new best friend?"Twitter
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Oct 17, 2013On Late Show with David Letterman, Trump says about Putin, "I met him once." Youtube
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Nov 9, 2013Trump visits Moscow for Miss Universe pageant. Meets with Vladimir Kozhin, a close confidant of Vladimir Putin.Daily Mail
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Nov. 9, 2013Interviewed in Moscow, Trump is asked by MSNBC whether he has a relationship with Vladimir Putin. "I do have a relationship, and I can tell you that he’s very interested in what we’re doing here today."MSNBC
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Nov. 9, 2013Trump tells Tass news service that he plans to build a Trump Tower in Moscow and was in negotiations with billionaire Aras Agarlov's Crocus Group. During his Moscow visit, Trump also meets with Herman Gref, CEO of state-controlled Sberbank PJSC, Russia’s biggest bank, which is under US sanctions. Sberbank and Crocus sponsor the beauty contest.BloombergTASS
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Nov 10, 2013Trump tweets, "I just got back from Russia-learned lots & lots. Moscow is a very interesting and amazing place! U.S. MUST BE VERY SMART AND VERY STRATEGIC."Twitter
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Nov 12, 2013Trump tells Real Estate Weekly that the pageant was a good networking opportunity. "The Russian market is attracted to me. I have a great relationship with many Russians, and almost all of the oligarchs were in the room."Real Estate Weekly
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Early 2014Russian intelligence begins researching U.S. electoral processes and related technology and equipment.DNI
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2014201420142014
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March 2014Russia annexes Crimea. President Obama imposes sanctions on Russia in response.
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March 2014Trump tells Conservative Political Action Committee conference that while he was in Moscow for Miss Universe pageant, “Putin even sent me a present, beautiful present, with a beautiful note, I spoke to all of his people."Buzzfeed
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March 2014Donald Trump calls Russia the United States' "biggest problem" and greatest geopolitical foe.CNN
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March 21Trump tweets: "Putin has become a big hero in Russia with an all time high popularity. Obama, on the other hand, has fallen to his lowest ever numbers. SAD" and "I believe Putin will continue to re-build the Russian Empire. He has zero respect for Obama or the U.S.!"TwitterTwitter
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May 27At National Press Club lunch, Trump says, "I was in Moscow recently and I spoke, indirectly and directly, with President Putin, who could not have been nicer."Mother Jones
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2015201520152015#NAME?
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Mid-March to Mid-May 2015Cyber-espionage group connected with the Russian government launches a spearphishing campaign, sending directed emails containing a malicious link
to over 1,000 recipients, including multiple U.S. Government victims. The campaign leads to the penetration of servers at the Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
CERTsecureworks
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June 16Donald Trump announces he is running for president of the United States.Youtube
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JulyRussian intelligence gains access to Democratic National Committee network. Maintains that access until "at least June 2016."DNI
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July 11At Freedom Fest rally in Las Vegas, Trump is asked about Russia: "I know Putin, and I’ll tell you what, we’ll get along with Putin.... I would get along very nicely with Putin, Ok. I mean, where we have the strength. I don’t think you’d need the sanctions. I think we would get along very, very well." Question was asked by Maria Butina, a founder of a Russian gun rights group and an aide to Alexander Torshin, a deputy governor of the Bank of Russia and close Putin ally, named by Spanish police as a suspected “godfather” of an organized crime and money-laundering ring.Daily BeastYahooVideo of Question
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July 30Trump, in Scotland, says "I think I'd get along very well with Vladimir Putin"Reuters
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UnknownBritish intelligence detect signs that Russia has hacked into the Democratic National Committee’s computer servers, and alert their American counterparts.New York Times
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SummerNSA becomes aware of Russian hacking. White House alerted to possibility that DNC has been hacked by the Russians. President Obama orders intelligence community to find out everything they can about it. Obama news conferenceHPSCI hearing testimony
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AugustMichael Flynn meets Donald Trump in New York for conversation that lasts 90 minutesThe New Yorker
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August 8Roger Stone leaves Trump campaign as paid political advisor. Stone says he quit; Trump says he was fired.Politico
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August 24Sputnik publishes story titled "Is Donald Trump a Man to Mend Relations with Russia?"Sputnik
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UnknownUS intelligence officials inform top congressional leaders in Top Secret briefing that Russian hackers were attacking the Democratic Party.Reuters
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SeptemberFBI alerts DNC via phone call that a server had been breached by a Russian group known as "the Dukes," later identified as "Cozy Bear" and "Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) 29."New York Times
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OctoberAnother Russian hacking group known as APT28 -- believed to be connected to the GRU, Russia's foreign military intelligence service -- begins to target the Hillary Clinton campaignsecureworks
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October On Savage Nation radio show, Donald Trump says he met Putin. “Yes, a long time ago. We got along great, by the way.”Yahoo
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October 11Trump and Putin both appear, separately, on 60 Minutes. Trump says he would get along "very well" with Putin.CNN
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Early November
D.C.-based representative of RT, Kremlin-backed propaganda network, contacted Flynn’s speakers’ bureau and invited him to Moscow for the channel’s 10th-anniversary celebration. The New Yorker
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DecemberAccounts associated with Russian propaganda "troll farm" called the Internet Research Agency begins supporting Donald Trump The New Yorker
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Late 2015British signals intelligence agency GHCQ learns of suspicious “interactions” between figures connected to Trump and known or suspected Russian agents. This intelligence was passed to the US as part of a routine exchange of information. GuardianJames Clapper Senate testimony on May 8
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December 17Vladimir Putin praises Donald Trump at his annual news conference. "He is a bright and talented person without any doubt. He is the absolute leader of the presidential race." Putin said Trump "wants to move to another level of relations, a closer, deeper level of relations with Russia. How can we not welcome this? Of course we welcome this?TASSWashington Post
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December 18Trump on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" asked about being complimented by Putin, a man who kills journalists, replies, "Well, I think that our country does plenty of killing, too, Joe.Twitter
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2016201620162016
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January 22Trump campaign video criticizing US Veterans Administration shows veterans from the Russian city of Tolyatti.TASS
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FebruaryMichael Flynn tells CNN that he has been advising Donald Trump on a range of issues. CNN
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February 2Kremlin "philosopher" Alexander Dugin endorses Trump.katehon
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February 28Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama endorses Trump.Politico
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March 2016A hacking group known as "Fancy Bear" or "APT28" launches a spearfishing campaign targeting email addresses at hillaryclinton.com and dnc.org that gains them access to DNC network. The hacking group is run by the Russian foreign military intelligence service (GRU) and appears focused on a single target: the DNC's opposition research files on Donald Trump. DNIsecureworksThe Plot to Hack America, Malcolm Nance.
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MarchIndividuals linked to the Russian government begin openly supporting Donald Trump and government-funded propaganda outlets RT and Sputnik cast Trump as the target of unfair coverage from mainstream media outlets.DNI
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MarchAt meeting at unfinished Trump Hotel in Washington, JD Gordon recalls Trump calling for a softening of GOP platform languge over Ukraine. Trump said that did not want to "go to World War III over Ukraine."CNN via Twitter
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March 3Trump names Sessions as chairman of the campaign's national security committee.Washington Post
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March 17At an event hosted by the American Council for Capital Formation, Sessions says “I think an argument can be made there is no reason for the U.S. and Russia to be at this loggerheads. Somehow, someway we ought to be able to break that logjam,” Sessions said. “Strategically it’s not justified for either country. It may not work. Putin may not be able to be dealt with, but I don’t condemn his instincts that we ought to attempt to do that.”Washington Post
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March 19APT28 gains access to the gmail account of John Podesta, Clinton's campaign manager.Wikileaks
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March 21Donald Trump tells The Washington Post editorial board that Carter Page, a former Merrill Lynch banker in Moscow, has joined his foreign policy team.Washington PostGlobalpolicyjournal.com
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March 22Billy Reinhart, former DNC employee working for Clinton campaign, receives an email telling him to change his Gmail password. He does, giving Russians access to campaign network.Email to Reinhart via New York TImes
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March 27Donald Trump calls NATO "obsolete." ABC News
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March 28Paul Manafort joins Trump campaign.New York Times
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AprilRichard Burt, former US ambassador to Germany, joins Trump campaign at the request of Paul Manafort. Burt is on the advisory board of Alfa Bank.
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AprilKonstantin Kilimnik, a Kiev-based operative with suspected ties to Russian intelligence, meets with Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort during a visit to the United States.Politico
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AprilAn intelligence agency in a Baltic state provides CIA Director John Brennan with a tape of a conversation about money from the Kremlin going into the US presidential campaign. Since the CIA cannot act domestically against American citizens a joint counter-intelligence taskforce was created comprised of the FBI, CIA, NSA, Treasury Department and DNI. BBCMcClatchyJames Clapper Senate Testimony on May 8
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April 27Sergey I. Kislyak, Russian ambassor to the US, attends Trumps's foreign policy speech at Mayflower Hotel, sitting in the front row. Trump calls for an end to "this horrible cycle of hostility" between the United States and Russia. The Wall Street Journal reports, "A few minutes before he made those remarks, Mr. Trump met at a VIP reception with Russia's ambassador to the U.S., Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak. Mr. Trump warmly greeted Mr. Kislyak and three other foreign ambassadors who came to the reception."Washington PostPoliticoWall Street Journal
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SpringJoint US counterintelligence investigation opens into Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort's links to Russia. Some of Manafort's contacts in Russia and Ukraine are under surveillance by the National Security Agency for suspected links to Russia’s Federal Security Service. Trump campaign advisers Carter Page and Roger Stone's links to Russia also come under investigation.New York Times
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April 19DNCLeaks.com domain registered anonymously via a small server in Romaniaicann.org
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April 29Democratic National Committee leaders are notified of network breach. DNC retains Crowdstrike Services.New York Times
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May Crowdstrike determines that DNC had been penetrated by Russian government hacking groups, "Cozy Bear" and "Fancy Bear"crowdstrike
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May US intelligence records GRU officer bragging to a colleague that GRU was getting ready to pay Clinton back for what President Vladimir Putin believed was an influence operation she had run against him five years earlier as Secretary of State. The GRU was going to cause chaos in the upcoming U.S. election.Time
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May 4DNC staffer Alexandra Chalupa informs colleague that, while researching Paul Manafort's connections to the Ukraine, she has daily received messages from yahoo.com informing her that account is being targeted by "state-sponsored actors" despite frequently changing her password.WikileaksThe Plot to Hack America, Malcolm Nance.
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May 6Fox News contributor Andrew Napolitano says “there’s a debate going on in the Kremlin between the Foreign Ministry and the Intelligence Services about whether or not they should release the twenty thousand of Mrs. Clinton’s emails that they have hacked into and received and stored."Fox News
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May 18Director of National Intelligence James Clapper says at a public forum that there are indications of foreign hackers spying on presdiential campaigns, without providng specifics.AP
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May 20Alexander Torshin, a deputy governor of the Bank of Russia and close Putin ally, named by Spanish police as a suspected “godfather” of an organized crime and money-laundering ring, meets Donald Trump at the National Rifle Association convention in Louisville, Ky. Torshin shares a dinner table with Donald Trump Jr. at a restaurant.Bloomberg
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JuneA Russian government think tank, the Institute for Strategic Studies, recommends that the Kremlin broaden its efforts to influence the 2016 US presidential election and launch a propaganda campaign on social media and Russian state-backed global news outlets to encourage US voters to elect Trump. Reuters
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JuneFBI seeks warrant from Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court to intercept communications from two Russian banks. Application, which reportedly named Trump, is rejected outright by judge.BBC
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JuneRussian hackers target voter registration systems in ArizonaWashington Post
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June 8DCLeaks.com launches its website and begins posting stolen documents from the Hillary Clinton campaign's media office. DCLeaks also releases emails stolen form accounts of Republican congressional officials. Content was provided by Russia's GRU, according to US intelligence.DCLeaks.comDNI
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June 12Julian Assange reveals that Wikileaks has emails related to Hillary Clinton which are pending publication.ITV
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June 14The Washington Post reports that Crowdstrike has determined that two Russian affiliated hacking groups had gained access to the DNC servers.Washington Post
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June 15"Guccifer 2.0" claims responsibility for DNC hack and releases internal opposition research and documents to at least two websites, The Smoking Gun and Gawker. "Guccifer 2.0" believed to be a cover (legend) for Russia's security services.Guccifer 2.0
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June 16“There’s two people I think Putin pays: [Rep. Dana] Rohrabacher and Trump,” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy tells a private group of GOP leaders. McCarthy adds: “Swear to God.” House Speaker Paul Ryan then says: “No leaks. . . . This is how we know we’re a real family here.” McCarthy spokesman first denies the account, then calls it a failed attempt at humor.Washington Post
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June 17Wikileaks publishes an 88GB encrypted torrent as "insurance." Suspected to be the entire stolen DNC cache.Twitter
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June 28Election officials in Arizona shut down part of the state's website due to security concerns. Believed to be the work of Russian hackers. Arizona Republic
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JulyIn a White House Situation Room meeting, national security officials discuss what to do about Russian influence in presidential campaign.New York Times
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JulyFBI again seeks a more narrowly drawn warrant from FISA court to intercept communications from two Russian banks. Application again rejected.BBC
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JulyRussian hackers target voter registration systems in Illinois. Officials shut down the state’s voter registration system for 10 days , after the hackers managed to download personal data on up to 200,000 state voters,Washington Post
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July 11At Republican National Committee meeting in Cleveland, Trump campaign staffers, including J.D. Gordon, lobby to exclude language from Republican platform that calls for the US to provide “lethal defensive weapons” for Ukraine to defend itself against Russian incursion.Washington Post
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July 13"Guccifer 2.0" releases a cache of purported DNC documents to The Hill.The Hill
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July 18Sen. Jeff Sessions attends a Heritage Foundation event in Cleveland during the Republican National Convention that was attended by roughly 50 ambassadors. When the event was over, a small group of ambassadors approached Sessions as he was leaving the podium, and Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak was among them. Sessions speaks individually with Kislyak.Washington Post
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July 19Two Trump campaign officials -- Carter Page and J.D. Gordon -- meet with Sergey KislyakUSA Todayglobalcleveland.org
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July 21Donald Trump tells The New York Times that the US response to its mutual-defense obligations under the NATO treaty would depend on whether member countries had paid their bills. New York Times
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July 21Donald Trump accepts the Republican nomination for president in Cleveland
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July 22Wikileaks releases more than 40,000 hacked DNC emails. Releases continue throughout the campaign, timed to gather maximum attention on the eve of the Democratic convention.Wikileaks
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Late JulyFBI opens a counterintelligence investigation of Russian meddling in election, including links Trump campaign officials and the Russian government, and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia's efforts.HPSCI Hearing Testimony
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SummerFBI applies for warrant from Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court to monitor four members of the Trump team suspected of irregular contacts with Russian officials. FISA court turn downs request asking FBI investigators to narrow their focus.The Guardian
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SummerFBI obtains Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court warrant for Carter Page, suspecting that he is an agent of a foreign power. The 90-day warrant is renewed at least once. The New York Times reports that the FISA warrant was issued after investigators determined that Page was no longer part of the Trump campaign, which began distancing itself from him in early August. CNN reports that FBI uses Christopher Steele dossier as justification for the warrant.Washington PostNew York TimesCNN
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SummerRobert Hannigan, head of GCHQ, passes material directly to the CIA Director John Brennan. The matter was deemed so sensitive it was handled at “director level”. Guardian
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July 25Trump tweets: "The new joke in town," he wrote, "is that Russia leaked the disastrous D.N.C. e-mails, which should never have been written (stupid), because Putin likes me."Twitter
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July 26The New York Times reports that intelligence officials have told the White House they have "high confidence" that Russia was behind the hack of the DNC.New York Times
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July 26Secretary of State John Kerry raises issue of DNC hack with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Vientiane, LaosKerry remarks
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July 27German reporter asks Donald Trump "Would you as president want to recognize Crimea as Russian, lift sanctions?" His reponse: "Yes we would be looking at that"Twitter
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July 27At press conference, Donald Trump denies ever having met or spoken on the phone with Vladimir Putin but adds, “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 [Hillary Clinton] emails that are missing." Trump also says he would consider recognizing Crimea as Russian territory and lifting the sanctions against RussiaYouTubePolitico
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July 27Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Rep. Adam Schiff, leading Democrats on congressional intelligence committees, call on Obama administration to declassify intelligence community assessments on Russian hacking.Feinstein/Schiff letter
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July 28Hillary Clinton formally accepts the Democratic nomination for president.
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July 28Reuters reports that the FBI is investigating a cyber attack, also by the Russian government, against the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which appeared to be aimed at Democratic donors to the Clinton campaign.Reuters
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July 28At Aspen Security Forum, DNI James Clapper says the U.S. intelligence community is not ready to say with certainty in public whether Russia hacked into the DNC servers. Clapper says it is fair to say that Putin is conducting "a low-level, undeclared, asymetric war with the US."Aspen Security
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July 29Yahoo News reports that the FBI found foreign hackers penetrated state election databases.Yahoo NewsFBI Statement via Yahoo
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July 31Sen. Jeff Sessions defends Trump's views on Russia on CNN. “This whole problem with Russia is really disastrous for America, for Russia and for the world,” he said. “Donald Trump is right. We need to figure out a way to end this cycle of hostility that’s putting this country at risk, costing us billions of dollars in defense, and creating hostilities.Washington Post
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